A Simple Way to Determine Who Are Your A Players

Every leader, including you, wants to have a team of high performers, A Players. When leaders hear about Topgraders achieving 85% high performers they want to know how many As, Bs, and Cs they have. Analyses of each of their people can become very complex and confusing.

  • What were their accountabilities?
  • To what extent did they achieve them?
  • How do their skills and performance stack up against people in their role at competing companies?
  • How does their salary compare with salaries for the job in other companies?

I’ve written blogs on the subject and in Topgrading, 3rd Edition I devote most of a chapter to this topic, including listing how As, Bs, and Cs differ on a variety of competencies. But if you are confused, this blog can help. There is a simple way to rate your team.

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Background: I hit on this easy way for you to rate your team members by creating a way to ask candidates in Topgrading Interviews to rate their teams.

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When interviewing candidates for leadership positions, a standard question Topgraders ask for each of the candidate’s leadership jobs is:

“Pat, when you entered that job how many A Players, B Players, and C Players did you inherit and how many of each did you have when you left the job? Think of A Players as high performers and people you would enthusiastically rehire. B Players are good but not really high performers, and C Players are low performers.”

Boom, that’s it! Hundreds of thousands of candidates have been asked this question for each job and they can immediately respond. You can easily apply this same question to rate your team.

To begin analyzing your team keep this standard in mind: A Players are high performers, people you would enthusiastically rehire. B Players are good but not high performers, and C Players are low performers.

To improve your team I hope you try Topgrading and, if you do, I hope this simple way of rating each team member is helpful.

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